Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Apple iPhone Has New Dog App That Benefits Seeing Eye Dogs

San Antonio application developer Joseph Dolan has created a new interactive program for Apple Inc. that will benefit Guide Dogs of Texas.

Guide Dogs of Texas raises, trains and provides guide dogs to visually impaired Texans to enhance their mobility and independence. It is the only guide dog school in Texas and is a member of the International Guide Dog Federation.

Dolan created a downloadable application called Pocket Puppy Raiser that allows users to interact with a virtual puppy on the Apple iPhone. Users can scratch a sleeping puppy’s belly until its leg shakes, pet the dog until it licks the iPhone screen or play a game of tug-of-war with the pup. Apple approved Pocket Puppy Raiser on May 7.

The application costs $2.99 per download and proceeds will be split among the iPhone App Store, Dolan and Guide Dogs of Texas.

Dolan, a graduate of Texas State Technical College, developed the application upon the recommendation of his mother, Michelle Pelletier, who works for Guide Dogs of Texas as a puppy raising program manager.

Dolan says he plans to upgrade the Pocket Puppy Raiser to reflect the different tasks guide dogs perform as they grow older.

“I’m thinking about starting the dog out as a puppy, and then as it gets bigger and becomes a guide dog it will take its owner for a walk on the street and stop at a crosswalk for traffic or for a walk to the Alamo,” he says. “It will be a challenge, but I think I can do it.”

To download the app, go to iTunes and search “Pocket Puppy Raiser.”

Apple Inc. (NASDAQ: AAPL) is based in Cupertino, Calif.

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